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digital daily: Eurodollar Meets Stablecoin

Eurodollar Meets Stablecoin: History is known to rhyme. Sometimes it screams “listen to me already!” US dollar deposits outside of the United States are known as the Eurodollar market. It started in Europe in 1957, borne from regulatory policy that restricted conversion of foreign exchange into US dollars. A dollar is a dollar is a dollar. But where it sits matters. Foreign companies could engage in deposits, transactions, investments, and bond issuance in the US dollar outside of the regulatory purview of the Securities and Exchange Commission or the Federal Reserve. At its peak in 2006, Eurodollar banking was one-third of global dollar banking. Today, frictions in the tokenization of the US dollar are pushing developments offshore. Assets tied to USD Tether, the most popular offshore US dollar stablecoin, have risen to a new high. Institutional competition is emerging within the regulated financial system. Hong-Kong based First Digital is expanding into USD stablecoin, complementing custody, trading, and asset tokenization. A registered trust company will hold US dollar reserves in segregated accounts, with the stablecoin issued on the Ethereum blockchain. This follows in the footsteps of Brazil, where BTG Pactual announced plans for a USD stablecoin linked to reserves held by the bank’s regulated custodian. Smaller investors led the way for US dollar stablecoin – 63% of Tether ownership is tied to retail activities. Having survived and thrived brutal stress, foreign institutions are leading the next wave of growth for US dollar stablecoin. The US dollar is not their currency, and regulatory friction is not their problem.